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Budget rig complete, what am I missing?

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March 28, 2011 11:57:16 PM

:hello: 

Hello, this is my first post, and my first "serious" build, and I realize I don't have much experience, but after reading this and other forums for a long time, I built a rig (with a budget in mind) to satisfy my gaming needs and have some room for upgrades for when my financial situation allows.

I ended up not asking questions, and using the "search" function (I know, it's not usual) to get answers, but I want your opinion on how well I did and if possible, some tips to squeeze more performance out of this thing. Also suggestions on "easy/cheap" upgrades/fixes are welcomed, along with stuff that I have missed (remember, I'm a noob when it comes to this).

Thank you for your time, here's what I have so far;

ASUS M4A88TD-V EVO/USB3 AMD 880G SB850 AM3 Motherboard

AMD Phenom II X6 1100T Black Edition

Corsair A50 CPU Air Cooler

Diamond 6970 2GB (with 2 fans, looks exactly like the powercolor version)

8GB Corsair Vengeance DDR3 Dual Channel (2x 4GB sticks)

Antec TruePower Quattro TPQ-1000 (1000W ATX Continuous Power Power Supply)

Seagate 1TB HDD

Pioneer DVD/RW Rom

CoolerMaster HAF-X Case, replaced the top fan with a 200MM Red LED one, and added a second one. (both top slots have 200mm red LED fans now)

24" Monitor (1920x1080 native)

Microsoft Sidewinder X6

Cyborg RAT 5 Gaming Mouse

OS is Win7 Ultimate 64bit

Everything is running stock, no OC so far.

So.. what am I missing? Is this a good budget build? Thanks in advance for any suggestions and comments.

-V-
March 29, 2011 12:09:03 AM

You're not really missing anything.

Is it a good budget build? Uh, you'll be fine. I would've saved $120 on the case and gotten a HAF 912, saved $100 on the power supply and gotten an Antec TruePower 750 W, and upgraded to an i5 2500k + $150 motherboard and then upgraded GPU to gtx 580 or so.
March 29, 2011 12:42:49 AM

mortonww said:
You're not really missing anything.

Is it a good budget build? Uh, you'll be fine. I would've saved $120 on the case and gotten a HAF 912, saved $100 on the power supply and gotten an Antec TruePower 750 W, and upgraded to an i5 2500k + $150 motherboard and then upgraded GPU to gtx 580 or so.

Thank you. The reason for the PSU is the fact that I'm saving up for a second 6970 for crossfire. Also, the difference in price between the Haf 912 and Haf-X was $30 not $120 :D  The GTX 580 comes to about $600 inc tax. I paid $350 for the 6970. The reason for choosing AMD is because I have no plans for overclocking. I would much rather have a bit slower, cooler and more stable system than a faster one, that produces more heat.

Which leads me to my next question, 6970 in CF is going to be OK for playing games in the next couple of years right? Keeping in mind it will cost me only about $100 more than buying one 580, it should also perform a bit better... ?!
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March 29, 2011 12:46:23 AM

You will not be able to crossfire with that motherboard. Isn't the HAF X $180? The HAF 912 is only $60. Did you get a special deal?

What country are you buying in?
March 29, 2011 12:49:47 AM

It has two PCIe 2.0 x16 slots, but one of them runs at x16 and the other at x4. And the Phenom II x6 isn't really the best AMD processor for gaming; it runs a bit slower in games than the x4 processors. So, I'm not sure how well that processor would hold up in a crossfire configuration if that were an option.

EDIT: A good 750 W would handle 6970 Crossfire. Especially, if you're not doing any overclocking.
March 29, 2011 12:50:52 AM

Whoa where did you get the HAF-X?
March 29, 2011 12:53:54 AM

mortonww said:
You will not be able to crossfire with that motherboard. Isn't the HAF X $180? The HAF 912 is only $60. Did you get a special deal?

What country are you buying in?

What do you mean? :(  The motherboard is listed as "Crossfire ready".. See here, bottom of page:



The 912 was 159, the Haf-X was 189... I'm in California.
March 29, 2011 12:58:51 AM

gjvah said:
What do you mean? :(  The motherboard is listed as "Crossfire ready".. See here, bottom of page:



The 912 was 159, the Haf-X was 189... I'm in California.


Yeah, it says "Crossfire Ready", but it's a bit of a lie. You can physically insert two graphics cards into that motherboard, and in that sense it's "crossfire ready", but there simply isn't enough bandwidth available for one of the cards not to be severely bottlenecked.

Look on the "details" tab and scroll down to "Expansion Slots".

PCI Express 2.0 x16 2 (blue @ x16, gray @ x4 mode)

Only the first slot runs at full x16 bandwidth. You would want at least 8 on the second one. x4 is a sure-fire way to bottleneck your crossfire.

And this case was $159?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
March 29, 2011 1:00:14 AM

2x 6970 will run circles around a single 580 GTX. I see that the 580 GTX is heading just under $500, but I think if you have the $700, 2x 6970 is the way to go.

Also you are buying the crazy looking mouse, cool. I don't like buying mice without feeling them first as nothing is worse than an uncomfortable mouse, hope it works out.
March 29, 2011 1:11:22 AM

mortonww said:
Yeah, it says "Crossfire Ready", but it's a bit of a lie. You can physically insert two graphics cards into that motherboard, and in that sense it's "crossfire ready", but there simply isn't enough bandwidth available for one of the cards not to be severely bottlenecked.

Look on the "details" tab and scroll down to "Expansion Slots".

PCI Express 2.0 x16 2 (blue @ x16, gray @ x4 mode)

Only the first slot runs at full x16 bandwidth. You would want at least 8 on the second one. x4 is a sure-fire way to bottleneck your crossfire.

And this case was $159?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I'm not going for a multi display setup, will the x4 still be a problem? 1920x1080 is enough for me, since the screen doesn't support more than that anyway.
March 29, 2011 1:18:32 AM

Yes, it will still be a problem. A single 6970 should be sufficient for 1080p for a while, though.
March 29, 2011 6:55:51 PM

mortonww said:
Yes, it will still be a problem. A single 6970 should be sufficient for 1080p for a while, though.

Thanks for the info, you seem like you're very knowledgeable. I guess when the time comes for a second card, I should upgrade the mobo as well.

In any case. I've been playing a few games, and everything runs smooth (maxed out) so far. I have finished Crysis 1 and Crysis 2 but I never played warhead. I'm downloading it on steam as I type.. I realize this is a bit OT, but what's the best graphics mod for warhead? I know there's "Natural Mod", "CCC" and "Real Lifesis". I've been searching all morning, can't figure out what looks best with different people saying different things. Also, since you seem to understand my setup more than me, (take that as a compliment) would you say my PC is good enough to run Warhead at high settings? (even at sub 1080p)

Thanks :D 
March 29, 2011 7:01:48 PM

Dyers Eve said:
2x 6970 will run circles around a single 580 GTX. I see that the 580 GTX is heading just under $500, but I think if you have the $700, 2x 6970 is the way to go.

Also you are buying the crazy looking mouse, cool. I don't like buying mice without feeling them first as nothing is worse than an uncomfortable mouse, hope it works out.

Everything in my OP is stuff I already bought. I don't like buying online, I played with the mouse at the store before getting it. It's not the looks that I like, it's the level of customization. You can change the shape and weight of the mouse to suit your hand, and the thumb rest and "sniper" button are really useful. It feels like a high quality product as well, with the aluminum skeleton and rubberized texture.
!